Tag Archives: twitter

Twitter Flies

Last year, according to Hitwise, one of the fastest growing websites was Twitter.

Over 12 months, the site saw a massive increase of traffic, and the latest data ranks the microblogging site as the 291st most visited web site in the UK, up from a ranking of 2,953. UK traffic to the site increased by a whopping 974% over the period.

Hitwise also suggested that Twitter is likely to be even more popular than the figures suggest, if statistics for people accessing their accounts via mobile phones and third-party applications were included.

As most people who are familiar with Twitter will know, it has now become an important part of the internet network, helpfully driving traffic to other sites. According to Hitwise, around 10% of redirecting tweets send users to news and media sites and over 17% end up on entertainment sites, although I’m interested to see how they accurately measured this. Thoughts, anyone?

LinkedIn LockedOut

It seems that cybercriminals are operating more and more now, especially in the ever-increasing social-media areas. LinkedIn is the latest victim, following the events we’ve seen on Twitter this week.

Celebrities were once unknowingly at the centre of this, as fake profiles on the site promised naughty pictures and videos – but surprise, surprise, any offer of nude pictures of Paris Hilton and Christina Aguilera linked straight to sites brimming with malware.

Trend Micro, the security experts, spotted the fake profiles earlier this week. But it was Sophos who spoke out, saying that it was a “a shame that LinkedIn aren’t keeping a closer eye on obviously bogus profiles being created on their site.”

Police go digital

Even though the UK Government has a pretty poor grasp on digital fundamentals, this doesn’t seem to have hindered our boys in blue.

The UK police has just dipped its toe properly into 2.0 applications, with the Home Office creating an interactive map for users to see how bad the crime is where they live. The Met even has it’s own private map!

I could comment on how the money could have been used to employ more officers to help prevent crimes in the first place, but I won’t, because it’s a good sign when you see organisations that are notoriously slow to use media like this, actually building and using it in a decent way. (Although the Home Office map design isn’t too hot.)

I’m still trying to find a UK force on Twitter though… Despite Downing St being online. The Americans have embraced this already, with smaller forces such as Franklin, MA and Scottsdale, AZ twittering away with the NYPD and equally impressive forces. Cyber criminals beware!

Social Integration

Love Twitter AND Google?

Well, now your Christmas has come early, as the micro-blogging site is about to be integrated with Google Friend Connect.

Basically, this means that when you join a friend-connected site, you can choose to use your Twitter profile and discover who you might know has also joined. You can also Tweet to the world about what’s going on.

Friend Connect lets webmasters add Google social features like chat to their Web sites with just a few clicks. Announced in May, it was launched this month, but isn’t a particularly new idea, as Facebook and MySpace have been running this for a while. (Facebook Connect and MySpaceID).

Interestingly, MySpaceID went live in the early half of the same month that Google annouced it’s Friend Connect concept. And Twitter was a partner with MSID. Even more confusing, Google partnered with MySpace to challenge Facebook.

Confused yet? This is like some social version of the whole Google-Yahoo-Microsoft saga earlier this year…

Last Social Stance

Lastminute.com‘s marketing guys continue to push the boundaries, this time setting up the company on Twitter.

I see this as being a bold move, and certainly could be setting the standards for other large companies. Increasingly, research is showing us that in order to actively engage online consumers, companies need to be embracing social media. This doesn’t necessarily have to take the form of a Facebook page or a dedicated network site, but can take more simple forms, such as on-site customer reviews or a well-managed blog – the latter of which, incidentally, Lastminute have been running successfully for some time now.

Twitter is already seeing interest and activity from some companies, but for a major player like Lastminute to start tweeting could well mean that we’ll be seeing some of the more well-known businesses suddenly online this way, especially when they see how quickly Lastminute’s been gaining followers.

Where on earth are you?

Everyone knows that Twitter is an amazing social tool.

So, get this: You can now follow LIVE reatime tweets from across the world using Twittervision. It’s in realtime and is a pretty cool application, but even better is TwittEarth, where you can download the application as a screen saver. Brilliant – I recommend you give it a go.

Twitter = Terrorism

In case anyone missed it, the US intelligence agencies – CIA, FBI, IBM – announced that Twitter means terror.

A rough report that somehow (as usual) found its way onto the internet gives a fun list of online and mobile apps – including MySpace, Facebook and Twitter – that apparently terrorists could be using. (As an aside, if I worked for a security agency, I’d be more worried about how a report like that got out onto the internet).

I won’t deny that social media has been – and still is – used by people to post extremist ideology, racism and the like, but when this happened, it’s totally unacceptable and is more often than not removed very quickly, with often nasty reprocussions for whoever posted it.

I think though, what they’re panicking about is that certain media is practically in realtime, therefore seemingly a great tool for the tech-savvy terrorist. Which, to be honest, is possibly pushing any boundary of common sense; I personally doubt such people would be operating openly on social platforms – and what about all the other technological advances since the carrier pidgeon? Email, SMS – even a phone call – seem more likely to be used by the social-conscious terrorist.

I suppose, for arguments sake, that social platforms could be used for grooming and recruiting into that kind of thing, but I’m fairly sure we’d all notice if al-Qaeda was on Bebo.

Now our wonderful Government seems to be calling for the likes of GCHQ and Mi5 to be able to monitor mobile and internet-based systems, storing details of ALL phone calls made and websites visited for up to two years in some kind of storage-super-computer. The wonderful Jacqui Smith seems to suggested this, but even top anti-terror experts are saying it’s nuts.

At least makes Google’s ideas on data storage look like a nice option, for once.